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Nutrients. 2009 Jan;1(1):83-100. doi: 10.3390/nu1010083. Epub 2009 Sep 3.

Dairy-rich diets augment fat loss on an energy-restricted diet: a multicenter trial.

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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA.


A 12-week randomized controlled multi-center clinical trial was conducted in 106 overweight and obese adults. Diets were designed to produce a 2,093 kJ/day energy deficit with either low calcium (LC; ~600 mg/day), high calcium (HC; ~1,400 mg/day), or high dairy (HD; three dairy servings, diet totaling ~1,400 mg/day). Ninety-three subjects completed the trial, and 68 met all a priori weekly compliance criteria. Both HC and HD contained comparable levels of calcium, but HC was only ~30% as effective as HD in suppressing 1,25-(OH)(2)D and exerted no significant effects on weight loss or body composition compared to LC. In the group that met compliance criteria, HD resulted in ~two-fold augmentation of fat loss compared to LC and HC (HD: -4.43 ± 0.53 kg; LC: -2.69 ± 0.0.53 kg; HC: -2.23 ± 0.73 kg, p < 0.025); assessment of all completers and an intent-to-treat analysis produced similar trends. HD augmentated central (trunk) fat loss (HD: -2.38 ± 0.30 kg; HC: -1.42 ± 0.30 kg; LC: -1.36 ± 0.42 kg, p < 0.05) and waist circumference (HD: -7.65 ± 0.75 cm; LC: -4.92 ± 0.74 cm; LC: -4.95 ± 1.05 cm, p < 0.025). Similar effects were noted among all subjects completing the study and in an intent-to-treat analysis. These data indicate that dairy-rich diets augment weight loss by targeting the fat compartment during energy restriction.


calcium; dairy; energy restriction; multi-center; vitamin D

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